Thursday, 21 April 2011

It`s official! GMB union rep who took redundancy, is now standing for Tameside Council

While council employees in Manchester have been talking about industrial action to oppose cuts in jobs and services, in Tameside, the council has been inundated with requests from employees wishing to take voluntary redundancy. Even the union leadership is abandoning ship, as the council seeks to lose 600 jobs and to make £35 million in cuts this year.

In our look at Tameside`s incestuous political scene on 22nd February, we reported on how some Tameside Council employees with Labour Party connections, were making inquiries about taking voluntary redundancy and also hoping to become Tameside councillors after leaving the council`s employment with their severance pay cheques. Amongst those mentioned were the GMB union representative Yvonne Cartey and the Ashton-under-Lyne Town Centre Manager, Frank Travis, the husband of councillor Lynn Travis.

Although Mr Travis failed to win the nomination for the St. Peter`s ward as we reported, this week, it was reported in the local Tameside Reporter that amongst the people standing in the local elections for Tameside Council on 5th May, is Yvonne Cartey, the former GMB union representative at Tameside Council. She is replacing Bill Harrison.

Ms Cartey is not the only union representative working for Tameside Council who has taken voluntary redundancy. Another is Anne Keighley, the former Branch Secretary of Tameside UNISON, who left Tameside Council`s employment in March. Mike Fowler, who until recently was a Forward Incident Officer for Tameside Council, is also standing for the council in Denton South and will be replacing Andrew Doubleday.

While there is no suggestion of any legal impropriety in this convenient arrangement, some people nevertheless, might smell a rat and perhaps feel that there is something rather shabby about this whole affair. Some might say that it smacks of jobs for the boys (and gals). Usually, if a council employee takes voluntary redundancy from Tameside Council, they cannot apply for another job with the council for a period of twelve months. But this does not apply to those who take noddy jobs, like being a Tameside councillor.

Certainly, Mr. Liam Billington of Tameside Taxpayers' Alliance, is not amused. In this weeks Tameside Reporter, he writes:

"I am disgusted that two former employees of Tameside Council are standing in the local elections for the Labour Party. Both have recently left their jobs. One is Yvonne Cartey, who is standing for the Ashton St. Michael`s ward. She is a taxpayer funded union representative for the GMB Union. The other is Mike Fowler, who was until recently a Forward Incident Officer who is replacing Andrew Doubleday. It`s not right that two employees of the council have so cosily jumped aboard to become candidates for the local elections. It`s obviously all about who you know rather than what you know. And may I ask if anyone claimed a redundancy payment from the council? If any of the said candidates do become elected, will they be returning their redundancy payment back to the taxpayers of Tameside?"

It is highly unlikely that either Ms. Cartey or Mr. Fowler will be returning any money even if they do become Tameside councillors, which seems almost certain, but we understand, that Ms. Cartey (an Ashton Soroptimist), has recently been boasting to friends and colleagues that she`s bought a new house and feels that it is now wrong that a person with her money, should be living in social housing (Cavendish Mill).

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Now it's jobs for the girls! Tameside's Yvonne Cartey certainly knows how to get on in politics and with Dave Cameron now saying he's 'relaxed' about giving a leg-up to friends and neighbours, perhaps we should all have a sex change and join the Ashton Soroptimists or maybe even go so far as to affiliate to the GMB union. Onwards and upwards comrades!